Rides to Nowhere, for No One: Owner of Medical Transportation Company Allegedly Billed Taxpayers for Rides Under Dead People’s Names
AG Coakley Alleges Cross Roads Trolley in Webster Received More than $470,000 in Payments for Medical Transportation Services Never Provided
BOSTON – The owner of a medical transportation company in Webster has been indicted for allegedly defrauding the state’s Medicaid program of more than $470,000 by billing for services under the names of deceased individuals, and for other medical trips that were never provided, Attorney General Martha Coakley announced today.
Cynthia J. Keegan, 50, of Webster, and Keegan Enterprises, LLC, d/b/a Cross Roads Trolley, were both indicted Thursday by a Worcester County Grand Jury on charges of Larceny over $250 (7 counts each) and Medicaid False Claims (7 counts each).
“We allege that the owner of this company intentionally billed MassHealth for rides that never occurred, or for people who were deceased, stealing thousands of dollars from taxpayers,” AG Coakley said. “These services are meant to provide critical transportation for particularly vulnerable residents who need outpatient medical care, not to be repeatedly taken advantage of at taxpayers’ expense.”
The AG’s investigation began after a referral from MassHealth. The investigation revealed that Keegan allegedly falsely billed for rides provided to more than 40 individuals after their death, and under the names of a dozen residents at two different nursing homes who never actually received a ride. Cross Roads Trolley is a privately held wheelchair van company that provides non-emergency medical transportation services when personal transportation is not suitable due to the MassHealth member’s physical condition.
According to the AG’s Office, Keegan submitted more than 1,500 claims to MassHealth under the names of 47 deceased MassHealth members. In one case, Keegan repeatedly billed MassHealth for transportation services more than five months after a woman’s death. Of the 1,500 false claims that were submitted, only 152 claims were actually paid out for a total of $6,900. The rest of the claims under those names were rejected by MassHealth.
Keegan, over a five-year period, also allegedly submitted more than 8,300 fraudulent transportation claims for 12 residents at two nursing facilities in West Brookfield, and received payments totaling more than $400,000. The AG’s investigation found that the billed services were actually for individuals that rarely left the nursing facility for medical care, or didn’t reside there at all.
In addition, Keegan allegedly billed for rides under the names of at least four other MassHealth members who were not transported on the dates given. These additional 1,000 false claims resulted in payments of nearly $70,000.
Keegan and Cross Roads Trolley will be arraigned in Worcester Superior Court at a later date.
Assistant Attorney General Ian R. Marinoff is prosecuting this case as part of the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Division. This case was investigated by Dean Bates, Robert Ames, and Jack D’Isidoro also from the AG’s Medicaid Fraud Division.